Pop Culture News

The Awesome Fest Releases Full Summer 2014 Lineup!


Following an exciting announcement of their first-time partnership with Wizard World, the Awesome Fest is proud to reveal a complete summer festival lineup with presenting sponsor Visit Philadelphia™, and radio sponsor Classic Rock 102.9 MGK. The Awesome Fest will host an eight-week celebration of music and film taking on a central theme of rock ‘n roll rightly titled “The Soundtrack of Awesome!”

Back bigger than ever, The Awesome Fest is bringing independent cinema, retro screenings, yet-to-be-released Hollywood Blockbusters, music, stand-up comedy and more to Philadelphia! For the fifth straight year, all outdoor screenings and concerts are completely free of charge. Outdoor venues include Liberty Lands Park (Northern Liberties), the historic Clark Park (University City), and the bustling Eakins Oval (Ben Franklin Parkway/Art Museum). Hitting the streets with an impressive festival lineup through August, The Awesome Fest yet again brings premium fanfare and general all around “awesomeness” to the City of Brotherly Love.

Opening with a City Gardens retrospective and punk rock/hardcore themed weekend of festivities (co-presented by This Is Hardcore Fest), The Awesome Fest will kick off on Wednesday, June 25th with a City Gardens tribute concert featuring INTO ANOTHER & MURPHY’S LAW. The following evening, The Awesome Fest will host the Philadelphia Premiere of Steve Tozzi’s RIOT ON THE DANCE FLOOR, the story of postman/promoter Randy Now & City Gardens, outdoors at Clark Park in University City. Other opening weekend screenings include the Philly Premiere of Robin Bell’s POSITIVE FORCE: MORE THAN A WITNESS featuring legendary punk icon Ian Mackaye (Minor Threat, Fugazi) and an Alex Cox double-feature of SID & NANCY/REPO MAN in celebration of the latter’s 30th anniversary.

Closing Weekend will feature two of 2014’s best rock docs, including the Philadelphia Premiere of Florian Habricht’s PULP: A FILM ABOUT LIFE DEATH AND SUPERMARKETS, and Mike Fleiss’s stunning and passionate documentary, THE OTHER ONE: THE LONG, STRANGE TRIP OF BOB WEIR.

“Rock ‘n Roll and Independent Cinema are two of my greatest passions”, said Awesome Fest Founder/Artistic Director Josh Goldbloom. “There’s a shared counter-culture between these two forms of artistic expression, and that’s the underlying theme I really wanted to explore within our festival design this year. Other than that, we’ll be attempting to launch a piece of bacon into outer space, throwing the city’s largest pizza party with Macaulay Culkin’s The Pizza Underground, and hosting a 90’s themed Prom in front of The Art Museum. And like any good rock show, we still have an encore set full of surprises.”

Check out the lineup at:
twitter: @theawesomefest


The Awesome Fest Lineup at Wizard World Comic Con
All screenings (except where noted) are free with your Wizard World ticket.
Tickets for Wizard World Comic Con are on sale at www.wizardworld.com

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

THE KARATE KID (30th Anniversary Screening), 5:30PM
Q&A with Ralph Macchio & Martin Kove!

The Doug Benson Movie Interruption (30th Anniversary Screening of REVENGE OF THE NERDS)
Trocadero Theatre, 9:00PM
Comedian Doug Benson brings his now infamous live movie interruption to the Trocadero for a 30th Anniversary screening of REVENGE OF THE NERDS. Curtis Armstrong (Booger) and other cast members (TBA) will join Doug from the front row, performing a live comedy show as they riff on one of the great nerd classics of all time. Tickets are on sale now at www.thetroc.com

Friday, June 20th, 2014

WIZARD’S WAY (Metal Man | 76 min.) Philadelphia Premiere, 12:30PM
Joe and Chris are two ambitious young filmmakers looking for subjects for a reality TV show. They set out to find “Windows” – a living legend amongst gamers dedicated to Wizard’s Way, an aging online fantasy video game. Julian “Windows” Andrews turns out to be a stereotypical nerd, sharing a minuscule apartment with his best friend Barry Tubbulb. Their entire existence revolves around playing Wizard’s Way. Joe and Chris see an opportunity to exploit the gamers and further their own careers; soon they’re blatantly crossing ethical lines. Jack Black and his Electric Dynamite production company recently purchased the rights to remake WIZARD’S WAY. Black is also the Executive Producer of the original.

KUNG FU ELLIOT (Matthew Bauckman & Jaret Beliveau | 93 min.) Philadelphia Premiere, 2:00PM
Elliot “White Lightning” Scott plans on becoming Canada’s first action hero with his low-budget karate epic, Blood Fight. This surreal documentary captures two years in the lives of a passionate amateur filmmaker, his supportive partner Linda, and their outrageous cast-all trying to realize their dreams. With everyone’s hopes and dreams pinned on Elliot, this comedic-drama unfolds into a shocking and complex examination of how we lie to ourselves. Winner of the Audience Award at Slamdance.

WICKER KITTENS (Amy Elliot | 52 min.) Philadelphia Premiere, 4:00PM
Director Amy Elliott in attendance
In Minnesota, the winters are long but the jigsaw puzzling is fierce. Join some of the top teams in competitive puzzling as they prepare for the largest contest in the country at the St. Paul Winter Carnival. And feel the loneliness, despair and bitter cold that drives them to be the best.

BUZZARD (Joel Potrykus | 97 min.) Philadelphia Premiere, 5:15PM
Paranoia forces small-time scam artist Marty to flee his hometown and hide out in a dangerous Detroit. With nothing but a pocket full of bogus checks, his Power Glove, and a bad temper, the horror metal slacker lashes out.

Saturday, June 21st, 2014

TO BE TAKEI (Jennifer M. Kroot | 93 Min.) Philadelphia Premiere, 11:00AM
Followed by a performance from The Roddenberries, a Star-Trek themed cabaret act
George Takei doesn’t shy away from digging into his remarkable career and personal life in Jennifer Kroot’s delightful and incisive film TO BE TAKEI.

TROMEO & JULIET with a Live Commentary from Lloyd Kaufman!, 1:15PM
James Gunn (Director of Marvel’s highly anticipated Guardians of The Galaxy) began his career with Troma, for whom he wrote his debut feature, Tromeo & Juliet. Join us as director & Troma head-honcho Lloyd Kaufman provides a live interactive movie commentary discussing the making of the film, working with Gunn, and all films from the infamous Troma catalogue.

A Conversation with Christopher Lloyd, 3:00PM
Join us as we turn on the flux capacitor, and go back in time with Christopher Lloyd to discuss his amazing and historic career in acting.

A Conversation with John Carpenter, 4:00PM

SUMMER OF BLOOD ( Onur Tukel | 86 min.) Philadelphia Premiere, 6:15PM
Eric Sparrow, a schlubby NYC hipster, lousy lover, and pseudo intellectual goofball with a complete lack of ambition, is dumped by his girlfriend after rejecting her marital proposal. After a few failed dates his luck turns when a chance encounter with a vampire turns him into a sex god with a thirst for blood. Written, directed, and starring Onur Tukel, Summer of Blood is a bitingly funny, often bloody, and refreshing take on the vampire genre.

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014

ALL CHEERLEADERS DIE (Lucky McKee & Chris Sivertson | 90 min.) Philadelphia Premiere, 12:00PM
From Director Lucky McKee (May, The Woman).
Producer Andrew van den Houten in attendance.
A rebel girl signs up a group of cheerleaders to help her take down the captain of their high school football team, but a supernatural turn of events thrusts the girls into a different battle.

Featuring Jeffrey Reddick, the creator, writer and executive producer of the FINAL DESTINATION series.
Tentsquare is the first completely crowd sourced production studio with an integrated social network. From the earliest development phases all the way through post-production, members have the opportunity to weigh in. Projects are 100% funded via the company, not the followers. Tentsquare recently launched at SXSW and are currently underway developing their first feature to be directed by Jeffrey Reddick.

A BRONY TALE (Brent Hodge | 80 min.) Philadelphia Premiere, 2:30PM
Director Brent Hodge in attendance
Straight from the Tribeca Film Festival and recently acquired by Morgan Spurlock, A BRONY TALE delves into the world of adult heterosexual males obsessed with the children’s cartoon “My Little Pony’.

“The Soundtrack of Awesome“

Opening Nights – Wednesday, June 25th & Thursday, June 26th, 2014

Co-presented by This Is Hardcore Fest
The Trocadero Theatre (6/25)
Tickets (416) go on sale Friday, May 30th at noon – www.thetroc.com

RIOT ON THE DANCE FLOOR (Steve Tozzi | 114 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
co-presented by the This Is Hardcore Fest
Directed by Steve Tozzi
Riot on the Dance Floor: The story of Randy Now and City Gardens is a documentary from director Steve Tozzi, that features the stark and iconic photography of Thrasher Magazine’s Ken Salerno. It is told through an oral history format of in-depth interviews and archival footage, bringing to life the gritty story of one of New Jersey’s most infamous clubs and its larger than life promoter. City Gardens was a venue for underground music and during its time it traversed the entertainment spectrum; from the comedy of Henny Youngman to Nine Inch Nails, New Order to Nirvana. Riot on the Dance Floor is a journey of musical champions and underdogs and above all, the freedom and liberation of having complete creative control.

Closing Night Events – Saturday, August 16th, 2014 & Sunday, August 17th, 2014

PULP (Florian Habicht | 90 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Outdoors at Liberty Lands
Saturday, August 16th, 2014
Pulp found fame on the world stage in the 1990’s with anthems including ‘Common People’ and ‘Disco 2000’. 25 years (and 10 million album sales) later, they return to Sheffield for their last UK concert. Giving a career best performance exclusive to the film, the band share their thoughts on fame, love, mortality – & car maintenance. Director Florian Habicht (Love Story) weaves together the band’s personal offerings with dream-like specially-staged tableaux featuring ordinary people recruited on the streets of Sheffield. PULP is a music-film like no other – by turns funny, moving, life-affirming & (occasionally) bewildering.

THE OTHER ONE: THE LONG, STRANGE TRIP OF BOB WEIR (Mike Fleiss | 86 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
The Trocadero Theatre
Sunday, August 17th, 2014
Mike Fleiss’ (God Bless Ozzy Osbourne) stunning and passionate documentary chronicles the life and career of legendary Grateful Dead rhythm guitarist (and founding member), Bob Weir. Containing never before seen archival footage, performances, and extensive interviews with Weir himself, this is a cinematic must-see journey that fans and music lovers alike will unquestionably applaud.
Tickets ($12) go on sale, Friday May 30th at 12:00PM – www.thetroc.com

Centerpiece (of Pizza) Event – Friday, July 18th, 2014

Free Concert & Pizza Party outdoors at The Oval – Followed by an outdoor screening of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990) The Pizza Underground will perform at 8pm. Screening will immediately follow.
The Pizza Underground is an American comedy rock band based in New York City. Namely parodying songs by The Velvet Underground with pizza-themed songs names and lyrics, the group consists of Macaulay Culkin (kazoo, percussion and vocals) along with Matt Colbourn (guitar, vocals), Phoebe Kreutz (glockenspiel, vocals), Deenah Vollmer (pizza box, vocals), and Austin Kilham (tambourine, vocals)


Clark Park
4398 Chester Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19104
All outdoor screenings are free to attend and begin at 9:00PM

RIOT ON THE DANCE FLOOR (Steve Tozzi | 114 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Thursday, June 26th, 2014
*Opening Night event

LIVING STARS (Mariano Cohn, Gaston Duprat | 63 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Thursday, July 3rd, 2014
In Buenos Aires, they are dancing. Dozens of real people, identified simply by name and occupation, are presented in their kitchens, living rooms, offices, and streets-each dancing to a fairly well-known pop song. Young and old, alone and with others, they perform for the camera with a rawness usually only reserved for the bathroom mirror. LIVING STARS is one of the true crowd-pleasers of the year!

Thursday, July 10th, 2014
Join us as we celebrate the 75th anniversary of one of the all-time greats, The Wizard of Oz. Experience the film as you’ve never seen it before, outdoors on a giant movie screen, synced up with Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of The Moon!

DEATH METAL ANGOLA (Jeremy Xido | 83 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Thursday, July 17th,2014
Co-presented by BlackStar Film Festival
War ravaged and potentially the richest country in Africa, Angola is the epicenter of the African hardcore music scene. Sonia Ferreira and Wilker Flores live and breathe rock and roll. They run and live in the Okutiuka orphanage in Huambo, Angola and have a dream. They are going to mount the first ever national rock concert, bringing together for the first time the best and the brightest in Angolan hardcore death metal, thrash metal and melodic death-core.

JINGLE BELL ROCKS! (Mitchell Kezin | 94 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Thursday, July 24th, 2014
Jingle Bell Rocks! is a trippy, cinematic sleigh ride into the strange and sublime universe of alternative and underground Christmas music, featuring The Flaming Lips, Run-DMC, The Free Design, Low, Miles Davis & Bob Dorough, Clarence Carter, John Waters, Akim & The Teddy Vann Prod. Co., The Mighty Sparrow, A Girl Called Eddy, El Vez and many more.

PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE (30th Anniversary Screening)
Thursday, August 7th, 2014

SKANKS (David McMahon | 85 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Thursday, August 14th, 2014
In the winter of 2012 a community theatre in Birmingham, Alabama mounted an original drag musical, “Skanks in a One Horse Town.” “Skanks” follows the actors and creators from rehearsal through performance, at work, at their homes, and with their families. The cast of amateur performers bond to form a family of sorts while creating an unconventional show in religion and football-obsessed Alabama.

The Oval
Intersection of Benjamin Franklin Parkway & 24th Street
All outdoor screenings and events are free to attend.

Friday, July 18th, 2014
Free Concert & Pizza Party outdoors at The Oval – Followed by an outdoor screening of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)
The Pizza Underground will perform at 8pm. Screening will immediately follow.
*Centerpiece event

Friday, July 25th, 2014
Live music TBA

Sponsored by Godshall’s Turkey Bacon
Friday, August 1st, 2014 – 5pm. APOLLO 13 at 8:30
Philadelphia’s largest Kevin Bacon Festival is back for another year of bacon-mania. Bacon themed truck offerings plus samplings of Godshall’s feature Maple Bacon, Turkey Bacon, Chicken Bacon and Beef Bacon will be part of the fest’s menu. Godshall’s will also be pulling out all the stops with recipes, contests and lots of bacon fun, including a bacon space capsule and a bacon astronaut who will be launching into “space”, courtesy of the Franklin Institute. Godshall’s is proud to make the leading real meat, real wood smoked, Turkey Bacon in America, right here in the Philadelphia area and we are excited to have them and all of the participants be part of another awesome Bacon Fest!

Free concert at The Oval
Friday, August 8th, 2014 – 8pm
Party like it’s prom night in 1999 with NYC’s hottest 90’s cover band, The Bayside Tigers. All you need to do is where your freshest neon outfits, and we’ll take care of the rest, including: a beer garden, photo booths, prizes for the prom king & queen, food trucks, and more!

Friday, August 15th, 2014 – 9pm

Liberty Lands
926 N American St, Philadelphia, PA 19123
All outdoor screenings are free to attend and begin at 9:00PM

POSITIVE FORCE: MORE THAN A WITNESS (Robin Bell | 70 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Saturday, June 28th, 2014
Punk activist collective Positive Force DC emerged in 1985, rising from the creative, politically-charged ferment of DC punk’s Revolution Summer.
This feature-length film skillfully mixes rare archival footage (including electrifying live performances from Fugazi, Bikini Kill, Anti-Flag, and more) with new interviews from key PF activists. Covering a span of 30 years, More Than A Witness documents PF’s Reagan-era origins, the creation of its communal house, FBI harassment, and the rise of a vibrant underground that burst into the mainstream amidst controversy over both the means and the ends of the movement.

THE CROW (20th Anniversary Screening)
Rochelle Davis (Sarah) in attendance!
Saturday, July 5th, 2014

JOHNNY WINTER: DOWN AND DIRTY (Greg Olliver | 80 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Saturday, July 12th, 2014
“LEMMY” co-director/producer Greg Olliver spent two years following Johnny from his home in Connecticut to France, Japan and beyond to create an intimate portrait of the Texas musician who played Woodstock, partied with the Rolling Stones and John Belushi, dated Janice Joplin, and jammed with Jimi Hendrix. Aptly named “JOHNNY WINTER, DOWN & DIRTY” by Johnny himself, this documentary explores what it’s like to live a life of sex, drugs and rock & roll debauchery with only a few regrets… but not without consequences.

Saturday, July 26th, 2014

BIG IN JAPAN (John Jeffcoat | 100 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Saturday, August 2nd, 2014
Big in Japan is a rock and roll road movie about a struggling Seattle band determined to not fade away. The film, which is based loosely on actual events, follows real life rockers, Tennis Pro, as they travel to Japan- a last ditch attempt to prevent their day jobs from becoming their careers. Director John Jeffcoat (Outsourced) utilizes a fresh narrative approach, guerrilla production style mixed with an international storyline to craft a dynamic and entertaining story where music and film intersect with two cultures to reveal simple, oftentimes hilarious, universal truths.

Saturday, August 9th, 2014
The year is 1987. Motorcycle ninjas tighten their grip on Florida’s narcotics trade, viciously annihilating anyone who dares move in on their turf. Multi-national martial arts rock band Dragon Sound have had enough, and embark on a roundhouse wreck-wave of crime-crushing justice. When not chasing beach bunnies or performing their hit song “Against the Ninja,” Mark (kung-fu master/inspirational speaker Y.K. Kim) and the boys are kicking and chopping at the drug world’s smelliest underbelly. It’ll take every ounce of their blood and courage, but Dragon Sound can’t stop until they’ve completely destroyed the dealers, the drunk bikers, the kill-crazy ninjas, the middle-aged thugs, the “stupid cocaine”…and the entire MIAMI CONNECTION!!!

PULP (Florian Habicht | 90 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Saturday, August 16th, 2014
*Closing Night event

The Trocadero
1003 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
$3 gets you in and goes towards a drink or snack (except where noted). 21+
*Trocadero events are indoors. Doors at 6:30. Movie at 8.

SID & NANCY/REPO MAN Double Feature
Monday, June 30th, 2014

Monday, July 7th, 2014

Monday, July 14th, 2014

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Monday, July 28th, 2014

Monday, August 4th, 2014

Monday, August 11th, 2014

THE OTHER ONE: THE LONG, STRANGE TRIP OF BOB WEIR (Mike Fleiss | 86 min.) Philadelphia Premiere
Sunday, August 17th, 2014 – $12.00 admittance
*Closing Night event

Check out the lineup at:
twitter: @theawesomefest

Recognized for their unique events and innovative approach to programming, The Awesome Fest was created as an outlet to bring the most cutting edge and just plain awesome titles from both the independent festival circuit, as well as Hollywood’s finest, to play some of the more unique venues and non-traditional spaces in the city of Philadelphia.
Since the Summer of 2010, The Awesome Fest outdoor summer series has showcased well over 200 Philadelphia Premieres from the world’s most prestigious film festivals, completely FREE to all who attend.

The Greater Philadelphia Film Office is a proud fiscal sponsor of The Awesome Fest.


Wizard World (OTCBB: WIZD) produces Comic Cons and pop culture conventions across North America that celebrate graphic novels, comic books, movies, TV shows, gaming, technology, toys and social networking. The events often feature celebrities from movies and TV, artists and writers, and events such as premieres, gaming tournaments, panels, and costume contests.
The full event schedule can be found at www.wizardworld.com

VISIT PHILADELPHIA™, formerly the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (GPTMC), is the region’s official destination marketing organization. It builds the brand and image of Greater Philadelphia, thus increasing business and economic impact for the five-county region.